Much ado about…..


Thank You Sir Richard Branson

Posted by gottabkd on Friday, March 16, 2007

VirginMobile logo

No seriously, a great big Thank You.

On the back page of section one of The Toronto Star on Wednesday, Sir Richard Branson took out a full page ad in an open letter to Canada’s 18.5 million mobile phone customers. Sorry there is no direct link to the ad but it basically explains to us Canadians, that with the new Number portability, it now gives us more options to move carriers. Of course he is now looking for more customers, but the point is he has made the Canadian Mobile system more like the USA and Europeans. He even has a site called that counted down the days, hours and minutes to the change. Now the site counts upwards counting the days of freedom.

Late Edit: go to and click on Richard Branson’s Note to see the open letter. 

Some history: Back in 1998…when number portability actually came into affectin the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) as well as eight other major cities across Canada, I for one tried to change my carrier while exercising my right to keep my number, only to be told by the customer service agent “Not gonna happen!” Flat out…. To which I replied, “But it is my right to keep my number. Why can’t I move it?” I was flatly told that the carriers are not going to allow it, they in fact fear it and are banding together “to not allow it”. They were breaking the law I told him to which he replied “But how deep are your pockets to fight them?”

And fast forward to this week….

In short,Sir Richard Branson HAS done us a huge favour. His company has been here since 2000, but he knew, some things are just not right…

  • Fact is: us Canadians are truly gullible. All the hoopla, the media misinformation and Sir Richard holding his gregarious publicity stunts really show how gullible we are.
  • Fact is: that number portability has been available as early as 1998.
  • Fact is: that since this availability, the Mobile Companies banned together and basically NOT allowed us consumers the ability to move to another carrier and takeour number with us. They did this… hello, WTF?!?!?!
  • Fact is: if Sir Richards pockets were not HUGE, us Canadians would not have fought the big companies to exercise our rights. After all, who is going to take on the big companies that make us pay up to 33% more in plan fees. No One… Until Sir Richard came along that is…
  • Fact is: the big companies are not going to do a darn thing to keep us with them. I mean nothing, they just don’t care as now they think it will be a non issue, saying Canadians are not that aggressive. Hello, you feared this 9 years ago and now you don’t????
  • Fact is: Sir Richard fought three appeals and eventually/finally won the case of number portability.

This not only makes me happy unhappy happy, but makes me wonder just what us Canadians will stand up to/for? Why does it take a UK gazillionaire to move the CRTC in the proper direction? Sure he brought us Virgin Mobile adding his company as a competitor, which means he had a stake in this decision, but even he was surprised to find out that number portability was not an option for Canadians. So Yeah, he went to bat for himself and us as well. To that I say thank you.

As a result, I think we all should move our numbers to another carrier, any other carrier than the one we are currently with. Just to prove a point; that this should have been available to us all when it first came into affect. Of course, you need to read your contract or wait until it is up, but just to mess with them a little, we should all move carriers. At least once! You can take a one year contract or pay as you go and then move back should you desire. But we should band together, for once just to make a point.

Chances are you won’t. Unfortunately Canadians are too passive for that and a recent poll on indicated that 70% of pollers will not change their carriers.

No wonder the world often views us as a passive people.

Till Next Time….Tags: , , , , ,
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